Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana has said his government will collaborate with civil society to develop the county. He said civil society organisations play a critical role in promoting good governance, adding his government is committed to creating a conducive working environment for them.
‘‘With meaningful engagement, we can meet the needs of the people of Makueni and fuel an open government which I champion for to ensure accountability,’’ Kibwana said. He spoke in Wote when he launched the Makueni Civil Society Network Conference. Kibwana said CSOs will be incorporated in county development committees so they can directly influence citizens and the county government towards change and transformation.
He said the public participation approach adopted by the county in implementing the development agenda was the best way to ensure sustainable and effective service delivery. ‘‘In this era of public participation, all actors should come together and forge a common way forward,’’ Kibwana said. The governor urged civil society to fight for its space and demand for transparency and accountable governance.
‘‘An active civil society helps develop and monitor policies for sustainable development and inclusive growth,’’ he said. The workshop was attended by CSO representatives and officials from the county governments. It aimed to explore the issues affecting civil society in the county and identify the gaps in order to improve service delivery.
Gerald Walterfang, the director of strategy at WDS Africa, decried the shrinking space of civil society, especially with the advent of devolution, but underscored the need for them to be vibrant. “Civil society acts as the bridge between the government and the citizenry,” he said.